Top 10 Things To Do in Kihei

Alexandra MitchellLast updated: July 12, 2018

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Kihei MauiTravel to the beautiful Hawaiian Islands, and maximize on every little opportunity you can for a fabulously memorable Maui holiday! From learning about humpback whales to surf lessons, to sightseeing and taking art classes, Maui has the best selection of activities in Hawaii in an ever-engaging environment. Please enjoy our Top 10 Things To Do In Kihei article below, and start planning the best Hawaiian vacation of your life!
 

 
Kihei Maui infographic

Kihei Activities and Things To Do

Humpback Whale Sanctuary

Created by the U.S. Congress in 1992, the Hawaiian Islands humpback whale National Marine Sanctuary aims to protect the North Pacific humpback whales and their Hawaiian habitat. The whole protected ‘sanctuary’ includes all shallow waters (600-feet in depth) surrounding the main Hawaiian Islands.

Humpback Whale Sanctuary

The Learning Center is located in Kihei and is a great place to visit to learn more about humpback whale education, outreach, and join in on resource protection activities. This beachfront facility offers year-round programs and rotating exhibits all revolving around the North Pacific humpback whale population; whale behaviors, photo identification, habits, birth and mortality rates, and preservation research.

Education and outreach programs focus on offering valuable public information about Hawaii’s oceans and the current conditions for the migratory humpbacks. The Maui center provides weekly, monthly and annual events including The Sanctuary Ocean Count, Ocean Awareness Training, Art & Photography Competitions, Community Events, and Lectures.

Humpback Whale Sanctuary

All visitors are invited to visit the newly remodeled Sanctuary Visitor Center Monday-Friday, 10am-4pm. Guests can explore temporary and permanent exhibits about Coral Reefs and Marine Life, Entangles Whales, Watersheds, Whale Songs, the Ko’ie’ie Fishpond, Native Hawaiian plants and culture, Weather & Climate Change, and much more. Guests can also talk story with marine specialists about the NOAA and the State of Hawaii’s conservation mission to protect Hawaii’s humpback whales, monk seals, sea turtles, and coral reefs.

For more information, please visit Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary.

Kihei 4th Friday Town Party

All visitors and residents are invited to check out the Kihei Town parties every 4th Friday of the month! This is a great monthly community event on Maui to partake in for those that are looking for a night of activities to do with their families, friends and loved ones.

Every month, guests can expect to enjoy local food and shopping vendors, a live artist showcase, guest speakers, dancing, Keiki (kids) events, live music and more. Each month, the entertainment is new and different, so this event is always super engaging and fun. Located at the Azeka Shopping Center, this event is free for all ages and usually begins around 6 pm.

Maui Friday Town Parties take place all over the island every week! Check out 1st Fridays in Wailuku, 2nd Fridays in Lahaina, 3rd Fridays in Makawao, 4th Fridays in Kihei, and 5th Fridays in Lana’i City on the outer Island of Lana’i.

Kihei Fourth Friday

For more information, please visit Maui Friday Town Parties.

Maui Brewing Company Tasting Room & Brewery Tours

Maui Brewing Co

“Maui Brewing Co. has a strong commitment to the local economy, and deep concern for the environment. We package in the most eco-friendly (and beer friendly) material, the can. Our spent grain is given to local farmers for feed and compost, contributing to local sustainability.” (www.MauiBrewingCo.com, 2015)

Maui Brewing Co

Since 2005, Maui Brewing Company has been providing beer lovers with a beautiful selection of handcrafted lagers and ales, all sustainably crafted. Maui Brewing Company started off selling wholesale, then opened their popular brewpub in Kahana. With all their well-deserved international success, Maui Brewing Company has now opened a state-of-the-art brewery and tasting room in Kihei. Here, guests can taste and learn about their flagship and seasonal beers such as the Bikini Blonde, Big Swell IPA, Coconut Porter, the Mana Wheat, and the Lorenzini Double IPA.

Maui Brewing Company’s Kihei Tasting Room is open every day from 11am-10pm, and Happy Hour provides $1 off all craft beers on tap from 3-6pm. Brewery Tours are a great way to experience Maui’s unique food and drink culture, and guests can do this 7-days a week at 12:30 pm, 1:30 pm, or 2:30 pm. The guided tour gives participants a chance to see the whole brewing process through the Brewhaus, Cellar and Packaging Line. The Brewery Tour costs $5 per person and includes a flight of four flagship Maui Brewing Co. craft beers. Private and large party tours are available with prior request*

Maui Brewing Co

For more information about Maui Brewing Company in Kihei, please visit Maui Brew Co.

Kealia Pond National Wildlife Refuge

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service established the Kealia Pond National Wildlife Refuge in 1992. Without a doubt, this refuge is one of the best places in Hawaii to observe and learn about Hawaii’s endangered wetland birds, and a handful of feathered visitors that travel to Hawaii from North America, Alaska and Asia.

Kealia Pond National Wildlife Refuge

Encompassing approximately 700-acres, the Kealia Pond National Wildlife Refuge is one of the few remaining natural wetlands in Hawaii. The refuge is also a natural basin for a 56-square mile watershed deriving from the West Maui Mountain Range. Located in the coastal areas of Kihei and Ma’alaea, guests are invited to visit the bird sanctuary and enjoy a nature walk through the Kealia Coastal Boardwalk. The boardwalk leads through ancient Hawaiian wetlands where guests can catch sight of Native Hawaiian birds; the Hawaiian Coot and the Hawaiian Stilt. Across the highway, the Kealia Fishpond is where guests can watch visiting water birds such as the Northern Shoveler, Northern Pintail, the Pacific Golden Plover, Wandering Tattler, and Ruddy Turnstones in a natural habitat.

Kealia Pond National Wildlife Refuge

For more information about the Kealia Pond National Wildlife Refuge Visitor’s Center and Boardwalk, please visit Kealia Pond.

Beginner’s Surfing & SUP Lessons

Surfing SUP

Kihei is the best area on Maui to choose for first time surfing and stand up paddle lessons. Ocean conditions in South Maui are typically calmer than all other Maui areas, offering many clear and shallow coves that are perfect for those that want to try water sports in a more predictable environment.

Kihei surf schools can provide everything you need for a successful first surf lesson. Group, semi-private, and private lessons are available, and typically include surfboard and gear rentals, 10-15 minutes of on-land training on the basics and ocean safety information, and hands-on experience in the ocean. With expert surf instructors, all guests will get a chance to stand up, throw out a shaka, and catch their first wave!

Surfing SUP

Since the ocean conditions are so mellow in Kihei, the area is becoming increasingly more popular for stand up paddling (SUP). SUP lessons are typically an hour and a half long and include SUP equipment rentals and use of a rash guard and booties. Group, semi-private, and private lessons are available. Once students get their footing, they’re guaranteed to be sweeping the ocean in no time!

The best surf and SUP instructors on Maui can adapt their teaching style so that all guests can learn, have fun, feel safe, and have an overall successful first lesson. Visit Maui for the best vacation of your life, learn new skills, and become the water sports enthusiast you always dreamed!

Hitter’s Paradise

Located in North Kihei, all visitors and residents that are looking for an awesome time should spend an afternoon at Hitter’s Paradise. This family-friendly sports training environment offers an abundance of entertainment opportunities for all; hitting lanes and a pitching lane for baseball and softball enthusiasts, video games, pool tables, and a bouncy castle.

Hitter’s Paradise provides a fantastic space for good times and some healthy competition! Batting cages allow for slow and fastpitch softballs, and baseball batting set up for 45, 55, 65 and 75 mph. Professional instruction is available, bats and helmets are available for use, and snacks and drinks are available for purchase.

The bouncy castle is open every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, and is free for any customer. Hitter’s Paradise is open 7-days a week and is a great place to have a birthday party, an impromptu date night, or a fun family activity.

Hitters Paradise

For more information, please visit Hitters Paradise.

Roller Skating

Maui’s only Inline Skating Rink is on the oceanfront at Kalama Beach Park in Kihei. This outdoor skating rink is operating by the Maui Inline Hockey Association (MIHA) and primarily run off of donations, club dues, and public skate hours. MIHA offers a space for Youth Hockey, Competitive and Recreational Adult Hockey, and is home to Maui’s infamous Roller Girls. But, MIHA is open to the public! Visitors and residents are encouraged to channel their inner child, and plan a skating date with all their fun roller friends!

Maui Inline Hockey Association offers public skating three days a week. Hours of operation are Wednesdays from 6-8pm, and on Fridays and Saturdays from 6-9pm. Rental skates are available to the public at just $5 a pair. Protective equipment (helmets, elbow pads, wrist guards and knee pads) is available for use at no additional cost.

Roller Skating Kihei

For more information about Maui’s only skating rink, please visit Maui Hockey

Snorkel Tour to Molokini

Snorkel Maui

When planning a vacation in Maui, make sure to go snorkeling in Kihei! Set about 2.5 miles off of South Maui, the Molokini Crater is a gorgeous underwater volcano islet. Listed as a Marine Life Conservation District Seabird Sanctuary, this partially submerged crescent-shaped volcanic crater is unlike any other snorkeling spot in the entire world. Hosting over 250 species of endemic Hawaiian tropical fish, this is the place to go when choosing the best snorkel tours in Maui.

At Molokini Crater, guests can expect to see Manta Rays, Black Triggerfish, Parrotfish, Moorish Idol, Moray Eels, Yellow Tang, Raccoon Butterflyfish, Green Hawaiian Sea Turtles, and even the occasional small White Tip Reef Shark. With crystal-clear water (average of 150-feet of visibility), 35 species of hard coral, and over 100 algae species, the waters surrounding the Molokini Crater are vibrantly colored and breathtaking.

Snorkel Maui

Molokini Snorkel Tours are available in the early mornings and the afternoons. It is an excellent location for beginning and experienced snorkeling in Kihei, and just so happens to be one of the most popular places for scuba diving in Hawaii.

For more information about Snorkel Tours to the Molokini Crater on Maui, please visit Snorkeling Molokini.

Island Art Party

Whether you’re an aspiring artist or someone who’s never held up a paintbrush in your life, you will love Island Art Party in Kihei! An event at Island Art Party is one of those cool and rare kinds of ideas that end up being a whole bunch of fun for everyone. All guests need to do is bring themselves, and a “Partista” (Party Artist) will provide the rest; aprons, painting supplies, and libations… No prior experience is necessary!

At Island Art Party, guests can expect to learn step-by-step painting instructions while creating your canvas art with your group. Painting parties are open to the public and can be booked in advance for private parties. Island Art Party is a great location to choose for some partner bonding time, a girl’s night out, family vacation events, bridal showers, or a birthday party. A parent or guardian must accompany all guests under 21 years old.

Visit Maui to relax at the beach, enjoy some good vibes, and check out beautiful scenery. Return home with the ultimate souvenir, your very own Maui Island art!

Island Art Party

For more information about art events, please visit Island Art Party.

Maui Raceway Park

For all of you race car enthusiasts, get excited because you can check out a great selection of car events when on Maui! Maui Raceway Park is one of the last remaining racetracks within the Hawaiian Islands, now operated by Maui County’s Parks and Recreation Department. The Valley Isle Timing Association, a Maui nonprofit group that’s been operating drag racing events on Maui since 1963, runs events. Maui Raceway Park is a living legend that all car lovers should most definitely visit! In fact, Maui Raceway Park is one of the five oldest racetracks in the United States.

Each weekend during race season, (February-November) over 100 racers goes head-to-head with up to 2000 spectators cheering them on. At Maui Raceway Park, guests can find a surplus of car events ranging from Drag Racing to Mud Bogging on a 220-acre facility. All events are sanctioned by the National Hot Rod Association’s (NHRA), and strict safety guidelines are always followed.

Guests are invited to check out Bracket Racing during the Friday Night Summit Racing Series program, Jr. Drag Racing qualifying rounds on Saturday afternoons, and Index Racing, Street Class, Import Class, Motorcycles and Jr. Dragster Final events on Saturday nights. Food, beverages, and souvenirs are available for purchase at each event, and admission is typically $10 for adults, and $8 for students and seniors.

Maui Raceway Park

For more information about Maui Raceway Park events, please visit Maui Raceway Park.

Kayaking

Kayak

From beginners to seasoned kayakers, you will find a variety of kayaking tours offered in Maui’s Kihei area. Kayaking is one of the best ways to experience Kihei’s most secluded spots. These excursions offer a navigated journey through pristine waters where your whole family will enjoy discovering Maui’s South Shore from a completely unique perspective. Peacefully paddling through crystal blue waters, without the noise or fumes from a boat engine, you can fully embrace the fragrances, sights and sounds that surround you. You will explore magical places while swimming and snorkeling amongst Hawaii’s beloved honu (Hawaiian green sea turtle) as well as some of the most amazing tropical fish. You may even have a playful dolphin or two join in paddling alongside of your kayak. There really in not a comparable way to observe Maui’s most amazing sea creatures. Many tours stop in a turtle town where you are sure to see honu. Turtle Town is several miles long with over a dozen reefs and awesome snorkeling opportunities. Kayak tours have the ability to paddle right to the honu without scaring them away with a large snorkel boat. Your Kayak tour guide is fully educated on Maui’s marine life. You will learn all you need to know about respect for the coral and the marine life that you will encounter on this amazing adventure. During whale season, kayaking is one of the best ways to experience and connect with the North Pacific humpback whales, up close and personal. There are many kayaking tours available in the early mornings with some afternoon tours launching from Kihei, on Maui’s beautiful South Shore.

Kayaking

For more information, please visit Kayaking

Kamaole Beaches

Kamaole Beach

Kamaole Beaches are made up of three Beach Parks nick named Kam I,II and III, that line the coastline of Kihei Town. All three beaches are located off South Kihei Road and numbered north to south starting just south of the Azteca Shopping Center and Kalama Park. The rocky points between these beach parks are some of the South Shore’s best snorkeling sites for you and your family to enjoy. All three beach parks are clearly marked and easy to find. You will be happy to find that they all offer an on-duty lifeguard, public restrooms, outdoor showers and are walking distance to plenty of amazing restaurants and shopping. This makes for a very convenient and enjoyable day at the beach. Kam I is the largest of the three and is a great spot for a long beach run or stroll with its easy beach access and gorgeous soft sand. Kam II is in the middle and is a fairly wide beach with plenty of space for family fun in the sun. This is the perfect spot to relax and catch some rays and/or take a dip in Kihei’s crystal clear ocean waters. Kam III is the furthest to the south of the three. This beach offers a large grassy lawn area, a playground with a structure, picnic table and BBQ pits, making it a great spot for large family gatherings. You can’t go wrong with a visit to any or all of these beautiful Kihei Beaches with their unbeatable mix of facilities, soft sand and easy access. Make sure to catch one of Maui’s breathtaking views from any of these incredible Kihei Beaches.

Kamaole Beach

For more information, please visit Kamaole.

comments about Kihei

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Written By  Alexandra Mitchell

Alexandra is a marketing professional with a passion for writing about travel to the Hawaiian Islands, vacation rentals, and luxury real estate. She exposes readers to glimpses of 'Old Hawaii,' new destinations to explore, local events, and all the best things to do on Maui.